It was the first warm day in months followed by an almost balmy night. I went outside to visit with our resident horse, Shasta. We live in a very unlit place. There are no streetlights on the top of this very big hill and the few houses are separated by lots of space and trees. The night sky is not hampered by competing lights from humans. I walked out of the garage and looked up in astonishment. The night sky was a deep blue dotted with stars I thought I could reach out and touch. I felt like a person who had been blind all her life and was for the first time seeing the night sky. There was a closeness about this sky, an intimacy like touch. The branches of the trees created lattice work that connected the stars. I was frozen in place with my vision turning into a physical sensation like touch. It was so intense I had to turn away, and in so doing I found myself looking into the gaping hole that is a garage. My eyes traveled along the surfaces of human made objects in a large, unattractive human made box. It was the epitome of ugliness in stark contrast to the overwhelming beauty of the sky. In that moment I understood the virtue of beads.
Most practical human made stuff is ugly. I am referring here to the practical stuff humans make like shopping centers and ugly couches and demanding signs that obscure the sky. I am not referring to the objects humans make when they create art. Almost everything nature dishes out is beautiful. It’s hard to find fault with her lines and placements. She always arranges everything correctly on the page of our vision. Humans create obscene ugliness with which most of us live most of the time. I escape it to some degree by living remotely and I have the great advantage of being able to focus on nature’s beauty without interruption.
What I understood about beads in that moment of grace with the night sky is that beads are consistently beautiful and uplifting. They are little stars we hold in our hand. They are intimate and smooth and they glow from within. They give us something rare: pure pleasure from a human mad form. They are each perfect little universes. We make things from them and as we do so we soak in their beauty. W are given the opportunity to see and to touch stars grabbed from the night sky. It made sense to me why people become addicted to these beads and why they keep buying more and more. They are filling up their cup with stars, hoping to never run out. The stars must exist in our own cups which is why we must take them home.